No. 7 Duke Wins NIT Season Tip-Off With 68-59 Win Over No. 13 UConn
Nov. 27, 2009
NEW YORK (AP) -The winningest matchup of Division I coaches was definitely one-sided.
Seventh-ranked Duke and Mike Krzyzewski won another NIT Season Tip-Off on Friday with a 68-59 victory over No. 13 Connecticut and Jim Calhoun.
The Hall of Fame coaches set the record for total career wins in a game and Krzyzewski now has 839, fourth on the all-time list, and Calhoun still has 809, good for sixth place.
The Blue Devils (6-0) dominated the Huskies (4-1) in every category in extending its winning streak in the tournament to 12 games with their third straight title (2000, 2005) and fourth overall (1985).
The win also snapped Connecticut's four-game winning streak in the series with the last two victories both coming in Final Fours - the 1999 national championship game and the 2004 semifinals.
Tournament MVP Jon Scheyer had 19 points to lead Duke, which has won five straight games and 12 of its last 13 at Madison Square Garden. The Blue Devils extended their winning streak in November to 22 straight games and that will stand for 11 months because their next game is against Wisconsin on Dec. 2.
Nolan Smith had 16 points and Lance Thomas added 11 points and 11 rebounds for Duke, which beat Arizona State 64-53 in the semifinals.
Jerome Dyson had 15 points and Gavin Edwards added 12 for the Huskies, who beat LSU 81-55 to get to their first championship game in three NIT Season Tip-Off appearances.
Duke was able to take a 37-28 halftime lead with an 8-2 run in an ugly last 4 minutes. Kyle Singler, who had his second straight poor shooting game, hit a 3 with 4:17 left that gave the Blue Devils a 32-26 lead. That was Duke's last field goal of the half and the Huskies had just one in that span, a drive by Stanley Robinson with 51 seconds left that made it 37-28.
The second half was Duke's in a hurry.
The Blue Devils used a 12-0 run - during which five players scored - to go ahead 53-34 with 13:18 to play. Calhoun called two timeouts in a 1:13 span in the run - he had already called one 1:30 into the half - to try and slow things down but the Blue Devils were scoring from the perimeter and overpowering the Huskies down low.
Duke finished 6 for 18 from 3-point range while the Huskies didn't make any in four attempts.
The Blue Devils finished with a 56-43 rebound advantage, including 25-14 on the offensive end. They even stayed with Connecticut in blocked shots, not an easy thing to do since the Huskies have led the nation in that stat the last eight seasons and they averaged 10.3 coming in. The Huskies blocked 13 in each of their last two games, a total Duke managed in all five games combined. Connecticut finished with nine, two more than the Blue Devils.
Connecticut did get within single digits with a 12-2 run that made it 62-54 with 52 seconds to play.